Posted: Oct 20 2015
That's what normally happens when you drop an egg!!
But with some creative ideas from budding engineers it's possible to drop an egg from quite a height without any cracks in sight!!
Getting kids interested in engineering is easy when it's FUN!! And a great place to start is the now infamous ‘Egg Drop Challenge’. This experiment, where children are challenged to dropping an egg from height without it breaking has been capturing imaginations and frustrating kiddies in equal measure for years. Better still, it only takes a few materials to undertake at home, and it makes for a great team activity to boot.
The Egg Drop Challenge: Materials
The materials below are typically used for this challenge, or some mix of them at least, although you can theoretically add in any materials you wish. The key idea behind this, of course, is that your child or children will be able to test various theories and contraptions.
- Toilet paper rolls
- Shoe box
- Lolly sticks
- Rubber bands
- Plastic bags
The Egg Drop Challenge: Instructions
- If you’re working with a good number of children then you should ideally form groups of between 2 - 4 members.
- Begin by gathering all of your materials and placing them upon a table.
- Purchase around 50 straws per team (if possible you should try and source relatively thin ones).
- Set aside between 15 - 45 minutes in total.
Undertaking the experiment
- Begin by dividing the team's up, and providing each with a singular egg, 50 straws, one roll of sellotape and provide them with access, perhaps in turn, to the table of materials.
- Inform the children of the rules. This specifically should include you telling them that the goal is to design and build a structure that protects the egg from a high drop. The teams will then be given around 15 minutes to put their protective structure together. If more than one team manages to create an effective protective structure then the winning team is the one that has used the fewest straws wins.
- Shout ‘Go!’ and oversee the progression of the team’s ideas. It may also be a good idea to keep an extra egg on hand (or a dozen!).
If you’d like a little further information about the Great Egg Drop from a website that is entirely dedicated to this fun challenge then head on over to the Egg Drop Project.org. Here you’ll find notes on everything from momentum through to pressure and onto Angular Momentum and Gravity (perfect for making this fun experiment a little more scientific!)
A Fun, Simple and Successful Challenge
This video is a nice little watch for the kiddies who may be struggling to figure out exactly what will work to keep the egg protected from its fall. It uses a very simple structure, using only paper and straws. Definitely one that we'll be trying!!!